BusinessEurope Headlines No. 2019-24
“We operate in an increasingly complex and challenging environment both politically and economically, in Europe, and around the world. Together business and governments can deliver solutions for 21st century challenges such as global trade, climate change, digitalisation and inequalities”. This was the key message conveyed by BusinessEurope President Pierre Gattaz to French President Emmanuel Macron on 3 July. The meeting took place in the context of the B7 Summit organised by Medef with the participation of business leaders from all the G7 economies. They gathered in Aix-en-Provence for 2 days of discussions on trade, climate change, inequalities and cybersecurity. “The digital transformation is making our lives easier, but an increasing concern is cybersecurity; we need coordinated international action now”, said Gattaz during a dialogue on digital transformation. The participating business organisations issued a joint statement at the conclusion of the B7 Summit.
Contact: Luisa Santos
Video message on the impact of a free trade agreement
Eero Kotkasaari is the third generation to manage his family business - Joutsen - in Finland. He talks about the challenges to export and the difference the free trade agreement between Japan and the EU has made.
“If you want to build innovative ecosystems, you need to know your regional environment and involve companies”, said Carolina Vigo, Adviser for Research and Innovation, at the panel discussion “To get the best out of global opportunities – how can regions strengthen their innovation ecosystems”, organised by BAK Economics on 2 July. Carolina explained that for regions to embrace the opportunities that innovation offers, it is crucial to understand what are the next generation of technologies, and companies – that are constantly in this anticipation mindset– can help regional authorities in identifying the challenges and opportunities of technology solutions.
Contact: Carolina Vigo
The Chair of the BusinessEurope Entrepreneurship and SME Committee, Anna-Lena Bohm, discussed with European Commissioner Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SME, Elżbieta Bieńkowska, as well as with SME representatives from European Member States and several business organisations about digitalisation, Single Market, public procurement and the future of EU SME policy during the SME Envoy Network meeting in Sigtuna, Sweden, on 28 June. On public procurement, in particular, Anna-Lena stressed that “there is no need to change the current public procurement directives as this would result in instability and significant legal uncertainty. The focus should rather be on simplification and on assessing problems regarding the application of EU procurement law in practice, also including an area of problematic legal transposition or practices at national or regional level”.
Contact: Daniele Olivieri
During the conference “Towards a New World Tax Order”, BusinessEurope’s Tax Policy Group Chair Krister Andersson talked about how the digitalisation of the economy is perceived as presenting important challenges for international taxation. In particular, related to the question of how taxing rights or income should be allocated among countries, and how the current negotiations at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) can transform the tax landscape to a large extent. The conference took place in Munich on 28 June and was jointly hosted by the Business and Industry Advisory Committee (BIAC) to the OECD, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and BusinessEurope. Andersson spoke with Valère Moutarlier, Director of Direct Taxation at the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Taxation and Customs Union (DG TAXUD), on the reallocation of taxing rights. Andersson stated that any proposal that addresses the taxation of the digital economy cannot tax revenue, and should be coordinated with strengthened dispute resolution mechanisms.
Contact: Pieter Baert
On 26-27 June 2019, the Administrative Council of the European Patent Office met in Munich and approved – among other things – the Strategic Plan SP2023. This Strategic Plan is intended to provide the roadmap for achieving the EPO’s vision for the next four years. It outlines the actions and initiatives to be taken and the improvements required to achieve the fundamental goals of sustainability and excellence. BusinessEurope, represented at the meeting by Elena Bertolotto, Adviser for Legal Affairs, welcomed the plan highlighting the extensive involvement of users in the consultation process that has led to its adoption. “BusinessEurope supports the EPO’s focus on delivering high quality products and services, modernising its IT tools and enhancing international cooperation activities in the field of patents. We now look forward to the implementation phase and to seeing the concrete projects that will be proposed in the coming months”, she said.
Contact: Elena Bertolotto
- 8 July: BusinessEurope event A trade strategy fit for the 21st century
- 8 July: EU – Ukraine summit
- 23 September: HELweCan! – Boosting skills & continuous learning
- 24 September: European Research & Innovation Days